Sunday, March 2, 2008

Review: The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers

For a book centered blog, I do seem to write astonishingly few book related posts here, don't I? Looking at the stack of books I still need to review here, it is seemingly insurmountable (or at least not do-able in a reasonable amount of time). Being backed up by 26 books is attributable to many things, not the least of which is that Carson McCullers' book The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter is at the top of the wobbling unreviewed mountain. Looking at it and knowing that I have a write coherent review of it has had me stumped so I've decided just to write whatever comes to mind and get over the mental block this book is causing. So here goes:

I know this book is considered a modern classic. Even Oprah has endorsed it. I completely and totally loathed it. It was beyond bleak and depressing. It was stultifying. The characters were completely uninteresting and bland. The setting was gray and unsatisfyingly drawn. There was no plot. There was no spark in this book at all. Even Mick Kelly, who is supposedly loosely based on McCullers herself, only has all too brief moments of being interesting. I never warmed to John Singer nor did I believe that any of these other desperate and simple people would be so fascinated by this deaf-mute man, who had walked among them for years without any such recognition. Nothing about this story made for appealing reading and while it was technically proficient, that doesn't absolve it of the responsibility of drawing the reader in and making the read a worthwhile experience. Personally, this reader was bored out of her gourd, put it down repeatedly and walked away from it, and ultimately finished it with a relieved sigh knowing I could go onto better things, things I cared to read.

And now, maybe having written this review, the log-jam will be broken and the rest of the reviews will come pouring out, making this an actual book related blog!

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